Mine stopping device and method of constructing same
Tunnel lining form
Modular reusable overcast
ApplicationNo. 10266182 filed on 10/07/2002
US Classes:454/169, With partition means (e.g., brattice, etc.)454/168, MINE405/132, UNDERGROUND PASSAGEWAY, E.G., TUNNEL405/150.1, Lining52/127.12, Threaded engagement means52/481.2, Demountable type (e.g., partition)52/262, Barrier resting on top of vertical structures; e.g., walls52/731.3, Having interlocking feature405/288, Roof support405/153, With separate fastening means between adjacent panels405/146, Lining installation405/149, Cut and cover52/293.3, With wall-securing means between wall bottom and footing (e.g., sill or sill plate)405/151Panel
ExaminersPrimary: Boles, Derek S.
Attorney, Agent or Firm
International ClassE21F 1/14
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
This invention relates generally to mine ventilation, more particularly to mine overcast and mine undercast structures (generally, mine air crossings), i.e., a structure for the intersection of two passageways or airways in a mine wherein air isflowing in each passageway or airway for ventilation, the installation thereof in the mine as completed functioning to by-pass air flowing in one airway over the other airway at the intersection to avoid interference of one flow with the other, and themethod of installation.
Reference is made to the co-assigned U.S. Pat. No. 5,412,916 of William R. Kennedy and John M. Kennedy dated May 9, 1995 entitled "Structure Having Quick-Connect Components", U.S. Pat. No. 5,466,187 of John M. Kennedy and William R. Kennedydated Nov. 14, 1995 entitled "Mine Ventilation Structure", U.S. Pat. No. 6,256,946 B1 of William R. Kennedy and John M. Kennedy dated Jul. 10, 2001 and U.S. Pat. No. 6,264,549 B1 of William R. Kennedy and John M. Kennedy dated Jul. 24, 2001 forbackground on mine overcasts and undercasts (including their function and prior overcast structure). Reference is also made to the co-assigned U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/038,356 of William R. Kennedy and John M. Kennedy filed Jan. 4, 2002entitled "Mine Ventilation Structure and Deck Panels Therefor". All these patents and applications are incorporated herein by reference. And reference is further made to the book titled "Practical Mine Ventilation" by William R. Kennedy, Second Editionpublished 1999 by Intertec Publishing Corporation of Chicago, Ill.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
Among the several objects of the present invention may be noted the provision of a mine air crossing structure which reduces the time and labor involved in the installation of the structure down in a mine at the intersection of two intersectingairways in the mine, thereby effecting substantial savings in labor cost and making the installation less laborious for workmen carrying it out; and the provision of a labor-saving method of making the installation.
Briefly, apparatus of this invention is a mine air crossing comprising opposite side walls and a deck extending from side wall to side wall. Each side wall comprises a plurality of sections each having a top, bottom and sides. The sections ineach side wall are assembled side-by-side and interconnected to form the respective side wall by quick-connections.
In another aspect of the invention, each side wall comprises a plurality of sections and the deck comprises a plurality of deck sections. The side wall sections are assembled side-by-side, and the deck sections are assembled side-by-side. Atleast some of the deck sections are interconnected to form the deck by quick-connections.
Other objects and features will be in part apparent and in part pointed out hereinafter.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
FIG. 1 is a view generally in horizontal section on the plane of the roof of two intersecting passageways or airways of a mine looking down, taken generally on line 1--1 of FIG. 2, showing an overcast construction of an embodiment of thisinvention at the intersection of the passageways (or airways);
FIG. 2 is a view generally in vertical section on the central vertical longitudinal plane of one of the passages, taken generally on line 2--2 of FIGS. 1 and 3;
FIG. 3 is a view generally in vertical section on the central vertical plane of the other passage, taken generally on line 3--3 of FIGS. 1 and 2;
FIG. 4 is a view generally in perspective of a completed tunnel-forming overcast of an embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 5 is a fragmentary exploded perspective showing part of a side wall and decking of the overcast and illustrating a step in a method of the invention;
FIG. 6 is a fragmentary exploded perspective showing two sections of a side wall of the tunnel;
FIG. 7 is a view generally in horizontal section on line 7--7 of FIG. 4 on a larger scale than FIG. 4;
FIG. 8 is an enlarged fragment of FIG. 3, being generally in elevation on each line 8--8 of FIG. 6;
FIG. 9 is a view generally in elevation on each line 9--9 of FIG. 6 on a larger scale than FIG. 6;
FIG. 10 is a fragmentary view illustrating procedure involved in making one of the quick-connections;
FIG. 10A is a development of FIG. 10 illustrating the quick-connection made thereby;
FIG. 11 is a fragmentary view illustrating procedure involved in making another of the quick-connections;
FIG. 11A is a development of FIG. 11 illustrating the quick-connection made thereby;
FIG. 12 is a schematic view generally in perspective of an exemplary undercast of an embodiment of the invention.
Corresponding reference characters indicate corresponding parts throughout the several views of the drawings.
Referring to the drawings, first more particularly to FIG. 1, indicated at 1 and 3 are two intersecting passages in a mine, typically a coal mine, each passage constituting an airway for flow of air as indicated by the arrows in FIG. 1 for mineventilation. Each airway has an upstream and downstream mouth at the intersection, the intersection being generally indicated by the reference numeral 5, the upstream and downstream mouths of airway 1 being indicated at 1a and 1b, respectively, and theupstream and downstream mouths of airway 3 being indicated at 3a and 3b, respectively. The floor in the airways and the intersection is indicated at 7, and the roof in the airways and intersection is indicated generally at 9 (see FIGS. 2 and 3), theexemplary roof shown having a dome formation 11 extending from a point 13 somewhat upstream of the upstream mouth 1a of airway 1 to a point 15 somewhat downstream of the downstream mouth 1b of airway 1 (see FIG. 3). Airway 1 is shown as somewhat widerthan airway 3; it will be understood that the airways may be of substantially the same width. It will further be understood that the roof 9 may have other than a dome formation, e.g., it may be cut square (same width all the way across).
Occupying the intersection 5 is an overcast (generally, air crossing) construction designated in its entirety by the reference numeral 17 built in accordance with this invention comprising a tunnel-forming overcast structure designated in itsentirety by the reference numeral 19. This tunnel structure comprises a pair of generally parallel opposite side walls, designated in their entirety by the reference numeral 21a and 21b, each being of such width as to wall off at least portions of arespective mouth 1a, 1b of airway 1, and further comprising a deck designated in its entirety by the reference numeral 23 extending from side wall 21a to side wall 21b at or adjacent the top and connected thereto as will be described. It is contemplatedwithin the scope of the invention that the deck extend between the side walls, e.g., the deck may rest on connectors, such as rivets, (not shown) extending from the side walls, rather than resting on top of the side walls as shown.
Referring to FIG. 2, each of the opposite side walls 21a, 21b of the tunnel 19 comprises a plurality of sections (side wall sections), each section being designated in its entirety by the reference numeral 25, each section having a top 27, bottom29 and sides 31 and 33. The wall sections 25 in each side wall 21a, 21b are assembled side-by-side and interconnected to form the respective side wall by quick-connections. More particularly, the sections are interconnected in side-by-side assembly byquick-connection elements 35, 37 on sides 31, 33 of the sections which generally abut one another in the assembly.
Referring to FIGS. 2, 4 and 7, each side wall section 25 preferably comprises a plurality of elongate vertically extensible panels, each panel being designated 39 in its entirety, the panels being in side-by-side relation. Note that solid,non-extensible panels are contemplated. For simplicity as herein illustrated, each section 25 is shown as comprising two of the extensible panels 39 side-by-side. Any number of panels, including just one, per section is contemplated. In thisembodiment, each of the extensible panels 39 is generally similar to the panel used in the mine stopping shown in the coassigned U.S. Reissue Pat. No. RE 32,675 dated May 24, 1988 and in U.S. Pat. No. 4,820,081 dated Apr. 11, 1989 of John M. andWilliam R. Kennedy, both of which are incorporated herein by reference. Each panel 39 comprises a lower member 41 having a telescoping sliding fit in an upper member 43. Each of the panel members 41, 43 is preferably a sheet metal member generally ofchannel shape in cross-section having a web and flanges, each flange having an inturned portion and lip (similar to web 21, flanges 23, inturned portions 25 and lips 27 of RE 32,675). As to each lower panel member 41, its web is designated 41a, eachflange 41b, each inturned portion 41c and each lip 41d. As to each upper panel member 43 (which is slidably extensible in member 41), its web is designated 43a, each flange 43b, each inturned portion 43c and each lip 43d. Other types of panel membersand panels are contemplated, including non-extensible panels. Extending across each side wall section 25 from one side (e.g. 31) to the other (e.g. 33) on what is the inside thereof as the section is incorporated in the tunnel 19 and at a level which isabove the upper ends of the lower panel members 41 (when extended) is preferably a cross-bar 45, e.g. an angle iron. Preferably, the cross-bar 45 is welded to the outside inturned portions 43c of the upper panel members 43 in the section. Initially, asfabricated and prior to incorporation in a tunnel side wall, the lower (inside) members 41 are capable of downward (and upward) sliding adjustment in the upper members 43 free of the cross-bar.
By way of example, each of the side walls of the tunnel 19 comprises at least three, e.g., five, of the sections 25 (the size and number of the sections may vary). Again, by way of example, each of the five sections 25 is generally two feet wideso that each side wall 21a and 21b and the tunnel 19 is generally ten feet long. Preferred section widths will range from about 4 feet to about 30 feet. Preferred section heights will range from about 3 feet (unextended) to about 30 feet (fullyextended).
Referring to FIGS. 4 6, each side wall section 25 has a shelf or header 61 at the top secured on the upper ends 63 of the upper panel members 43 (see FIG. 5 particularly). The header is secured to the two upper panel members of the section 25 asby welding and may have the support of gussets 65 similar to what is shown in the aforesaid U.S. Pat. No. 6,264,549 B1. A footer (not shown), such as a channel, adapted to engage or rest on the floor may be included at the bottom end of the lowerpanel members 41. Alternatively, a head and head seal (not shown) similar to that shown in U.S. Pat. No. 4,820,081 (which is incorporated by reference) may be installed at the bottom end of the lower panel members 41.
The deck 23 of the tunnel 19 of this embodiment comprises several deck sections 67, e.g., at least three, and as shown the same number of sections (five) as there are tunnel side wall sections 25, each deck section 67 having a width correspondingto the width of a side wall section. Thus, for the five-section side walls 21a, 21b shown, there are five deck sections 67. However, it is contemplated that each wall section 25 be several times wider, e.g., two, three, four or five times wider, thaneach deck section 67. For example, there may be five deck sections resting on a single wall section. Each deck section 67 bears at its ends on the shelf or header upper end 63 and is shown as being connected to the shelf and thus to the upper panelmembers 43 of the two extensible panels 41 of the side wall section by pin 69 and bayonet slot 71 quick connections shown in FIG. 5 in similar manner to the deck connection shown in the aforesaid U.S. Pat. No. 5,412,916.
Referring to FIGS. 4 6, the side wall sections 25 (wall sections) in each side wall 21a, 21b are interconnected in side-by-side assembly by sets of the quick-connection elements 35, 37 on abutting sides 31 and 33 of the sections, specifically anupper set 73 and a lower set 75. As shown, and subject to variations, the quick-connection elements comprise a bayonet slot 35 at one of the one abutting sides, specifically the side 31 of a section 25, and a pin or headed stud 37 at the other abuttingside, specifically the side 33 of a section 25. Also, as shown, and subject to variation, the lower bayonet slot 35 of the lower set 75 is in a rectangular plate 77 secured (as by welding) on the flange 41b at the side 31 of the section and the bayonetslot 35 of the upper set 73 is in the gusset 65 at side 31. The lower headed stud 37 is in a rectangular plate 79 secured (as by welding) on the flange 41b at the side 33 of the section and the upper pin or headed stud 37 is secured (as by welding) tothe gusset 65 at side 33. Referring to FIGS. 8 11, in this embodiment each bayonet slot 35 is generally vertically oriented, having the opening 81 constituting its large end at its upper end and the relatively narrow part 83 of the bayonet slotextending down from the large end 81. Each pin or headed stud 37 comprises a stem or shank 85 extending outwardly at right angles from the part (79, 65) to which it is secured, and a head 87 on the stem or shank 85. The head 87 is somewhat smaller thanthe end opening 81 of bayonet slot 35 so that it may pass therethrough and the stem or shank is somewhat smaller than the narrow part 83 of the bayonet slot so as to fit therein. Quick-connection elements preferably require no tools or no loosefasteners, though less preferred quick-connection elements may require simple pounding or pulling tools (e.g., a hammer or pry bar) to form a connection. Other types of quick-connection elements than those shown are contemplated.
With respect to the tunnel 19 as completed (the method of fabrication thereof to be subsequently described), the headed studs 37 are received in the bayonet slots 35 as shown in FIGS. 10A and 11A. More particularly, the stem or shank 85 of eachstud is received in the narrow part 83 of the respective bayonet slot 35, occupying the lower end region of the narrow part of the respective bayonet slot. FIG. 10A shows the interconnection of adjacent sections 25 effected by each of the lower sets ofquick-connection elements 35/37; FIG. 11A shows the interconnection of adjacent sections 25 effected by each of the upper sets of quick-connection elements 35/37.
As shown in FIG. 5, each deck section 67 of this embodiment includes quick-connection elements, such as pin 69 and bayonet slot 71 quick connection elements for interconnection of adjacent deck sections in side-by-side assembly to form the deck23. Other types of quick connection elements, including without limitation fork-shaped projections or simple cylindrical projections, are contemplated. As shown, the elements 69/71 are oriented generally vertically for connecting adjacent deck sections67 prior to connecting the formed deck 23 to the side walls 21a/21b. Alternatively, the elements 71 for connecting adjacent deck sections 67 and for connecting the deck sections to the wall sections 25 may be oriented parallel to the longitudinal axisof the deck sections (i.e., rotated 90° from the positions shown) so that connection of a deck section to an adjacent deck section and to a wall section may be achieved simultaneously with one longitudinal movement of the deck section. It iscontemplated that the connection elements between deck sections or between wall sections be other than quick-connection elements within the scope of this invention. For example, bars 45 and twist clamps may be used. Moreover, either of the decksections or the wall sections may include no connection elements, e.g., there may be connection elements on the wall sections and not on the deck sections, within the scope of the invention.
Once the tunnel wall sections 25 and deck sections 67 have been brought into the mine and are available at the intersection of the passageways 1 and 3, a method of this invention of installing the mine overcast 17 of this invention is generallyas follows. A first of the wall sections 25 (e.g. a first section 25 of side wall 21a) is positioned and supported generally upright but may be inclined or angled somewhat to allow for easier connection of a deck section 67. One end of the deck section67 is lifted (i.e., lifted from the floor of the mine) and fastened on top (i.e., on shelf or header 61) of the first wall section 25 utilizing the pin 69 and bayonet slot 71 connections (FIG. 5). The other end of the deck section 67 is lifted and asecond of the wall sections 25 is positioned generally upright beneath the other end of the deck section and opposite the first wall section. The other end of the deck section 67 is brought into engagement with the second wall section 25 and similarlyfastened on top (i.e. on the shelf or header 61) of the second wall section, thereby forming a first subassembly of tunnel 19 having one side constituted by the first wall section and an opposite side constituted by the second wall section 25 with thedeck section spanning the sides of the first subassembly. Note that this procedure automatically plumbs the first wall section 25. In one embodiment, the deck sections 67 are much narrower than the wall sections 25. In that case, more deck sectionsare placed atop the first and second wall sections. Thereafter, additional wall sections 25 are quick-connected side-by-side with the first and second wall sections, and deck sections 67 are then fastened thereto, to form at least one additionalsubassembly of the tunnel. The side-by-side quick connection is carried out by lifting wall sections 25 into a position with the sides 33 opposed to sides 31 of the first subassembly, thrusting it endwise for the reception of the headed studs 37 in thelarge upper end openings 81 of the bayonet slots 35 at side 31 of the first such assembly, then allowing the second subassembly to lower itself so that the stems or shanks 85 of the studs slide downward into the narrow parts 83 of the bayonet slots 35(see FIGS. 10A and 11A). If necessary for the size of the overcast, this procedure is repeated for the quick connection of the third subassembly to the second, the fourth to the third, and the fifth to the fourth. As described in U.S. Pat. No.6,264,549 B1, the tunnel may then be raised to the desired height of the deck and lower panel members 41 may be extended as required for the desired height, and wire ties 89 (or other suitable clamps) applied over the bar 45 as shown in FIG. 7 to holdthe upper panel members 43 relative to the lower panel members. After the tunnel is complete, an end wall including wing panels and end panels as shown, for example in U.S. Pat. No. 5,466,187, may be constructed.
Other methods of installation are contemplated. For example, after a first of the wall sections 25 (e.g. a first section 25 of side wall 21a) is positioned, the lower panel members 41 may be extended as required for the desired height of thedeck, and wire ties 89 (or other suitable clamps) applied over the bar 45 as shown in FIG. 7 to hold the upper panel members 43 relative to the lower panel members. A second of the wall sections 25 is positioned, and extended as needed, opposite thefirst wall section. One end of a deck section 67 is fastened on top (i.e. on shelf or header 61) of the first wall section 25 utilizing the pin 69 and bayonet slot 71 connections (FIG. 5) and the other end of the deck section 67 is similarly fastened ontop (i.e. on the shelf or header 61) of the second wall section 25, thereby forming a first subassembly of tunnel 19 having one side constituted by the first wall section and an opposite side constituted by the second wall section 25 with the decksection spanning the sides of the first subassembly. Note that extension of the lower panel members 41 may be performed after the structure is completely assembled, similar to that described above and in U.S. Pat. No. 6,264,549 B1. Additional wallsections 25 are quick-connected side-by-side, and deck sections 67 are then fastened thereto, to form additional subassemblies of the tunnel.
As further examples, the deck sections 67 may be secured to one or both of the wall sections 25 prior to positioning the wall sections on the floor 7. Moreover, the deck sections 67 may be secured to one another by engaging the respective pins69 and bayonet slots 71 as described above, or by other suitable connection means. The deck sections 67 may be simultaneously secured to the wall sections 25 or completed side walls 21a/21b in one motion as described above, or the complete deck 23 maybe secured to the completed side walls.
As shown schematically in FIG. 12, the deck may alternatively extend from side wall 21a to side wall 21b at or adjacent the bottom of the side walls to form an undercast 93. For an undercast 93, the deck sections 67 are placed on, for example, aprefabricated base, a masonry base or a graded cut bank (not shown), and connected together using suitable means. Note that typically when an undercast is used, air flow in one direction is between the sidewalls 21a above the deck, and air flow in theother direction is through the cut beneath the decks generally transverse to the longitudinal axes of the deck sections 67. As shown in FIG. 12, wall sections 25 are attached along an outermost edge of the outermost deck sections 67. These decksections are preferably provided with slots 71 along such edges. Thus, in a preferred embodiment, the wall sections 25 and deck sections 67 are connected by engaging the pins 69 with the slots 71 as described above.
Other air crossing constructions are contemplated. For example, "end walls" made up of wall sections 25 may be added to the top of the deck to extend up to the roof, especially where the roof is extremely high. Such end walls may be turnedupside down and locked into slots (not shown) in the deck sections.
In view of the above, it will be seen that the several objects of the invention are achieved and other advantageous results attained.
As various changes could be made in the above constructions and method without departing from the scope of the invention, it is intended that all matter contained in the above description and shown in the accompanying drawings shall beinterpreted as illustrative and not in a limiting sense.
When introducing elements of the present invention or the preferred embodiments thereof, the articles "a", "an", "the" and "said" are intended to mean that there are one or more of the elements. The terms "comprising", "including" and "having"are intended to be inclusive and mean that there may be additional elements other than the listed elements.
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